Page 192 began with some work on a few of the final “structure” pages of the children’s book I expect to publish soon. The illustrations are all complete and I needed to format some information for the copyright, dedication, and about the author pages. When completed, this will make book number ten that I have written and published and I am excited to see what God will choose to do with this one as it is quite different from my other writings.
Once the book was proofread and information sent to the illustrator, I took care of a few tasks around the building before settling in for some prayerful work on the teaching material I’ll share at a student conference later this month. The largest part of this process is spending time with God to refine the focus of what He would have me present. The topic, Developing a Lifestyle of Prayer, is one I enjoy teaching but it can easily fill ten to twelve one-hour sessions and I have two one-hour time slots at the conference. 🙂 One of the difficulties in developing a lifestyle of prayer — at least for those of us who grew up with the influence of a church environment — is the need to rethink and broaden our perspective on what prayer is. A lifestyle of prayer, or prayer without ceasing, requires that prayer becomes as natural to us as breathing. One of the things with breathing is, that for the most part, we do it all the time without giving any thought to whether we are doing it right or not. In fact, the only time we give it much thought at all is when our breathing becomes unnatural or becomes a thing of difficulty. How vibrant would our prayer life be if it was such an ever-present part of our life that it was painfully obvious only when it was missing?
By mid-afternoon it was time to come up for air and head out for a late lunch on my way home. By the time I got home I had an email with the latest revisions to my book, so I spent some time going over them before giving approval to the changes. After resting a little while, I went outside to take some photos and relax on the porch as I watched for hummingbirds to photograph them as well. Today’s photo is of the first sunflower blossom of the year. The sunflower not only has a bright, sunny look to it, the “face” of the blossom generally follows the sun throughout the day so that the blossoms are typically facing east in the morning and west in the evening. It made me think of how we ought to turn our face toward God at all times. In a way, that describes the lifestyle of prayer that I teach about and that we all ought to have as we keep our face turned toward God each moment of our life.
As I reflect on the day, here are some thoughts/lessons that stand out to me:
- A book of content — even good content — soon falls apart without the proper structure surrounding it. Life is very similar.
- For me, it is easy to build a routine and keep at it. Stepping out of that routine to do something new is difficult but sometimes faithfulness requires that I do so.
- Success to the child of God ought to always be measured in faithfulness.
- When you do the work God has called you to do and you do it for Him, what He turns it into ought to always be acceptable.
- A lifestyle of prayer ought to be as natural to the child of God as breathing — maybe even more so.
- Sometimes using a lot of words is easier than using important words — but it’s not always better.
- Knowing how to concisely tell your “God-story” can be very useful as you often won’t have the time available to give all the details you would like.
- When we live each day with our face toward the Son, we find that others see His reflection in us more clearly.